December Issue 2014

Page 75

we end up working with all sorts of people but at some point we end up working with a fair amount of guys. This has been the case for nearly every industry I’ve been in and it’s something that successful woman need to be very cognizant of because it may come at the expense of how you’re respected and viewed in a particular arena or in a particular industry. For me that cost is just too high to bear and I have yet to meet anyone through work that is worth taking that risk. AfroElle: So what is your philosophy on mixing business with pleasure? LMB: I totally mix business with pleasure. I do it all the time. I go on vacation with work colleagues. I go grab dinner and drinks with work colleagues. If one of my company’s founders is coming into town sometimes they stay at my home; I consider that mixing business with pleasure. I believe in that 1000% and honestly believe that it can help create stronger relationships in that sort of scenario because people get to see who you are outside of wok and outside of your work personality. And depending on who you really are, that often times strengthens the relationships I have with people and they tend to have new found respect for all that they see me managing and responsible for in my personal life. AfroElle: Are there certain aspects you think

I think that in order to be successful you have to be taken seriously. I think that as a successful woman you have to have rules.

are fundamental to healthy business relationships that are different from personal relationships? LMB: For me they are the same because I look at it as people I’m going to spend a lot of time with so I have essentially the same expectations as someone I would want to go to the beach with or be in a relationship with. I think one of the big deal breakers for me on the business side is trust, which is also a deal breaker for me on the personal side. I think having someone with integrity, confidence, and a strong sense of self is someone I want to work with. That’s a baseline pre-requisite because I know that in my absence the people I have on my team are still going to make good decisions, have a good filter, still make good assessments, and still have a good head on their shoulders. AfroElle: The feminist movement has in many ways assisted in the upward mobility of women in the workplace. >>>